Strongman competitor William Harris opened his gym to help exercisers achieve ultimate physical conditioning with an innovative approach to fitness that eschews the mirrored walls, isolated machine workouts, and pie-eating competitions of standard gyms. His cadre of personal trainers—most of whom are certified Level 1 CrossFit coaches—draws on real world athleticism: trainer Phaidra Knight was named the women's' rugby player of the decade 2000–2009, and Rob Gutierrez works as a physical trainer for the NYPD. For CrossFit sessions, certified trainers design intense, ever-changing workouts that safely push members while providing motivation and support. Classes rotate through various challenges such as calisthenics, weight lifting, kettlebells, and sprinting, relying on both intensity and variety of motion to improve comprehensive fitness. To bolster long-term health, coaches dispense nutrition tips that keep bodies fueled and give clients the tools to spur fat loss and muscle gain. The results build bodies that function in real-world tasks, such as running to catch a bus, lifting a sack of dog food, or throwing a discus and riding it to work.
Blink Fitness strives to make habitual exercise a natural, necessary component in its clients’ daily lives. It does so by designing clean, practical gyms stripped of gimmicks and frills, stocked with sleek green equipment, and staffed by welcoming, motivating trainers. At each location, guests can choose from more than 150 Life Fitness and Precor machines that dream of boosting someone's strength and cardio capacity. There are other kinds of equipment lying around, too, including free weights, medicine balls, and strongmen willing to be powerlifted. For those who want an inspirational push and a targeted program, 30-minute personal-training sessions can be booked one at a time or in 5- or 10-session packages.
Getting in shape, much like doing the backstroke through a pit of quicksand, can be a daunting task. But the health buffs at Yonkers Fitness Center provide doses of motivation and support to help their students conquer any physical challenge. They make fitness fun and attainable through yoga and Pilates, Jazzercise, and classes for kids. The yoga classes range from yoga flow, which covers yoga’s fundamentals, to Pranayama yoga, a practice that focuses on controlled breathing. Jazzercise takes a much more up-tempo approach to exercise. Its routines blend cardio, strength, and stretching exercises borrowed from dance styles, such as hip-hop and jazz, and fitness regimens, including yoga, Pilates, kickboxing, and resistance training. To boost the calorie-burning effects of the workouts, the instructors often call upon handheld weights and other strength-training tools.
Bally enshrines exercise classes, calorie-burning equipment, and a fitness-focused staff within its sanctuaries of health. A 30-day membership includes access to a spread of group exercise classes, including Pilates, Reaction Cycling, and Step Fitness (class offerings vary by location). For self-guided worker-outers, cardio equipment such as treadmills, elliptical machines, cross-trainers, and stair climbers torch calories while entertaining the brain with video entertainment and integrated music systems that occasionally whisper quotes from Charles Atlas. Bally also boasts an array of strength machines, free weights, and small-apparatus equipment, and grants gym-goers access to on-site locker rooms, showers, and, at some locations, a pool and steam room. Visit each location's webpage for a list of specific amenities and the lineup of classes.
Amy and Chris Miller don't want healthy living to stop the minute their clients leave the gym. “We strive to help our clients reach a new level of mindfulness and physical well-being that can be transferred into their daily lives,” the owners explain. That's why they incorporate a holistic approach to Maxfit Indoor Cycling Retreat. Their spinning classes help to strengthen core and leg muscles while boosting metabolism and burning calories long after the sessions end.
To help women achieve their fitness goals, the certified personal trainers at Get In Shape For Women focus on four areas: weight training, cardio training, nutrition, and accountability. In small group sessions, trainers modify exercises to suit up to four ladies' fitness levels, beginning by calibrating 30 minutes of strength-training drills—such as free weights, lunges, and squats—to each student's abilities. Then comes 25 minutes of cardio: the trainers might start novice exercisers with a walk on the treadmill or light elliptical training, and challenge more advanced exercisers to high-intensity interval-training sessions for enhanced results.
The trainers supplement the group workouts with nutritional planning centered around the concept of eating six small, balanced meals six days a week. They set aside the seventh day for a bit of indulgence, be it eating a favorite sweet or lusting openly after bacon. To track ladies' progress toward reaching their goals, the trainers measure their weight weekly and body-fat percentage monthly.